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Air, river and ocean currents all move in major patterns from the mid latitudes of our planet up to the Arctic regions and then back down. Recently, scientists have noticed that in these "circulation pathways" you can actually find pollution pesticides from our cities and farms.

This is called "transboundary pollution" -- Contaminants (poisoning stuff) enter the atmosphere or a river system and are carried to the Arctic. A pollutant pesticide (like Chlorin) normally lasting 8 months in a warmer climate, lasts 40 years in the freezer of the Arctic!!!!!

Once in the Arctic, the sun does not easily burn them off nor do they evaporate as they do in warmer climates. Instead, they are being preserved in "the big freezer" up there. One contaminant in particular last 8 months in warmer climates, but when it gets to the Arctic it last 40 years!

A pollutant pesticide (like Chlorin) normally lasting 8 months in a warmer climate, lasts 40 years in the freezer of the Arctic!!!!!

Then, these contaminants enter the food web. They are found in seals, which are eaten by the polar bear and the Native people. Unfortunately, they are now found at a very high level in mammals and humans. The closest known source of these contaminants is thousands of miles away such as India, Europe and the United States.

The teamís garbage is repackaged and carried along until they return.

Do you know where your garbage goes when it leaves your house?

The typical route has it collected by a local trash company, taken to a trash station. Here it will be loaded into a large trailer and hauled to a landfill. Follow your school garbage for a day and see what happens. Start out by asking who hauls the schools garbage? Contact that company and follow the trail from there!

What do the arctic people do? What about the ground being frozen (permafrost). Do you think that is a problem?

Recycling is a great idea. To be truly effective, recycling is a circle. But the real truth is most people only complete a portion of this circle. If you separate glass, paper, plastic and aluminum from the waste stream, you are indeed helping the environment, but you are not finished.

To really make a difference, the next time you go to the store, buy paper, plastic, glass and aluminum products, which are marked as being recycled. Although it may be slightly more expensive, by purchasing these items you will create a bigger market for recycled products, which means more will be used by manufactures, completing the recycling circle!


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